What I see. Mary, a very young girl (at most fifteen years old judging by her appearance), is in a small rectangular room; truly, a young girl's room. Against one of the two longest walls is the bed: a low bed, without a frame, covered by thick mats or rugs - it would seem that these are spread out on a board or on a framework of reeds. on a framework of reeds because they are very rigid and without folds like those of our beds. Against the other wall, a shelf with an oil lamp, some rolls of parchment and a piece of needlework - it looks like embroidery - carefully folded.
On one side of the shelf, towards the door, which leads to the orchard, now open, although covered by a curtain that moves moved by a light breeze, Our Lady is seated on a low stool. She is spinning a very candid and silky soft linen. Her little hands, only a little darker than the linen, spin the spindle rapidly. Her lovely, youthful little face is slightly tilted and slightly smiling, as if she were caressing or following some sweet thought.
There is great silence in the cottage and in the orchard. And a lot of peace, both in Maria's face and in the space around her. Peace and order. Everything is clean and tidy. The room, of very humble appearance and furnishings, almost bare as a cell, has an austere and regal air, due to its great cleanliness and the careful placement of the bed cover, the scrolls, the lamp and the little copper vase near it with a bundle of flowering twigs inside, twigs of peach or pear, I do not know; what is clear is that they are from fruit trees, of a slightly pinkish white.
Maria begins to sing softly. Then she raises her voice slightly. She does not reach the full singing, but her voice already vibrates in the room, feeling in it a vibration of the soul. I do not understand the lyrics, which are undoubtedly in Hebrew, but, given that from time to time she repeats "Yeohveh", I intuit that it is some sacred song, perhaps a psalm. Perhaps Mary remembers the songs of the Temple. It must be a sweet memory. Indeed, she leaves her hands in her lap, and with them the thread and the spindle, and raises her head to lean it backwards against the wall. Her face is alight with a pretty blush; her eyes, lost behind some sweet thought, bright with a burst of weeping, which does not overflow them but enlarges them. And, in spite of everything, the eyes laugh, smile at that thought that they see and that abstracts them from what is sensible. Standing out from her very simple white dress, surrounded by braids, which she wears gathered like a crown around her head, Mary's pink face looks like a beautiful flower.
The song becomes a prayer:
- Lord God Most High, delay no longer to send your Servant to bring peace on earth. Raise up the propitious time and the pure and fruitful virgin for the coming of your Christ. Father, holy Father, grant that your Servant may offer his life for this. Grant that I may die after having seen your Light and your Justice on Earth, knowing that the Redemption has been accomplished. O Holy Father, send to Earth the Sigh of the Prophets! Send the Redeemer to your servant. When my day ceases, may your House be opened to me because its doors have been opened by your Christ for all those who have hoped in you. Come, come, Spirit of the Lord. Come to your faithful ones who are waiting for you, come, Prince of Peace!
Mary remains thus engrossed....
The curtain beats louder, as if someone were pushing it with something or wanted to pull it aside. And a white light of pearl fused with pure silver brightens the faintly yellowish walls, makes the colors of the fabrics more vivid, Mary's raised face more spiritual. In the light the Archangel prostrates himself. The curtain has not been drawn before the mystery that is taking place; indeed, it no longer beats: it hangs, rigid, attached to the jambs, separating, like a wall, the interior from the exterior.
The Archangel must necessarily acquire a human aspect; but it is an ultra-human aspect. Of what flesh is this most beautiful and dazzling figure composed? With what substance has God materialized it to make it sensitive to the Virgin's senses? Only God can possess these substances and use them in this perfect way. It is a face, it is a body, it is eyes, mouth, hair and hands like ours; but it is not our opaque matter: it is a light that has taken on the color of flesh, eyes, hair, lips, a light that moves and smiles and looks and speaks.
-Hail, Mary, full of Grace, hail! - The voice is a sweet arpeggio as of pearls struck against precious metal.
Mary shudders and lowers her gaze. Her shuddering increases when she sees the fulgid creature kneeling about a meter away from her, hands folded on her chest, gazing at her with infinite veneration.